Approximately a quarter of the residents of multi-apartment houses throughout Lithuania have accumulated unused items in the common premises or attics of the house. This trend is noticed by Civinity Namai, a company providing administration and maintenance services for apartment buildings, whose employees clean almost half a thousand basements, attics or other common areas loaded with various old and unused items in one year. Items stored in common areas make it difficult to access engineering systems and can pose a threat to the safety of home occupants in the long run.
According to Gintaras Arbačiauskas, a representative of the Civinity company, residents like to store old and obsolete furniture, household appliances, plumbing equipment or building materials left over after repairs in the corridors, basements and attics of apartment buildings.
Residents who like to store things react slowly to the administrator’s requests to tidy up the common areas of the house and vacate the premises. There is also a reluctance to take responsibility for off-site items. Such irresponsible actions of the residents pose a direct threat to the security of the residents of the entire apartment building.
“The residents of the apartment building themselves have to tidy up the basements, attics or staircases of the house. Unfortunately, the residents of the house themselves rarely do this, so we receive a lot of requests from the apartment administrator to do this work. We notice that in the houses managed by Civinity Namai we have to clean basements or attics in apartment buildings 7-8 times a week. Residents have to pay for the service provided, so in order to save money, we recommend that residents maintain order in the common areas of the house, ”says G. Arbačiauskas.
There are cases when the administrator of an apartment building, after informing the residents in advance about the planned removal of unused items from the common areas, the residents use the situation, rushing to get rid of other obsolete property, taking everything to the common areas.
Crowded common areas in apartment buildings can increase the risk of fire or make it difficult for residents to successfully evacuate it. The company Civinity Namai, which manages apartment buildings in five Lithuanian cities, calculates that at least once a year, cases are recorded when objects stored in the basement or attic of a house become a fire.
“During the administration and maintenance of apartment buildings, we notice that residents still load the common areas of apartment buildings with unnecessary items, not realizing that they pose a fire risk. In the event of an accident, objects may interfere with access to the fire. Regular maintenance of home engineering systems in crowded rooms makes it more difficult to access equipment and detect signs of failure in a timely manner. Unwanted people, such as mice, can also appear in the stacked items,” says G. Arbačiauskas, a representative of Civinity.
According to experts, in the event of a fire in a basement or hallway, the fire could spread instantly and the stacked items would interfere with access and extinguish the flames. During a fire, the room fills up with delicacies, which is a great danger to life.
Residents are asked to comply with fire safety requirements and not to load or block the stairs, basements, corridors, balconies, loggias and other exits of apartment buildings with various materials. Failure to comply with fire and hygiene rules will result in fines.